Press Send

Have you ever had a great idea? Have you spent hours, days, weeks and maybe months putting together a solid plan for a business, blog, podcast or book only to come to the most important part of the project (the start) and find out that you can’t pull the trigger?

It’s not just you. It happens to everyone.

Recently, I wrote a post about how we need to stop listening to ourselves and start talking to ourselves. Throughout our days we will have great ideas. But how many times will we take actionable steps to implement those great ideas and bring them to reality?

Don Shula once said, “The start is what stops most people.”

Let’s stop and think about that for a moment. Have you ever told yourself you’re going to do something big with your life?

How about telling yourself you’ll go back to the gym to get that “summer body” you used to have?

Or better yet, have you come up with an idea that you deem a “can’t miss” or “a no brainer” that can change the lives of others?

Now, how many times have you taken actionable steps to implement those ideas into your daily life to make a difference?

One of my favorite videos on this very topic is a talk by Art Williams called “Just Do It.”  It was sent to me a few years ago by my good friend Joe Ferraro, who is the creator and host of the 1% Better Podcast. It was right around the time I had made a trip to Pittsburgh to meet with executives about the expansion of Kevin Wilson Baseball, LLC. I spent 5 hours in a conference room being mentored on how to take KWB to the next level.

I had a clear vision of where I wanted to go, but I didn’t exactly know how to get there.

At this point in the company’s history, I had taken the company as far as I could on my own. It was going to be vital to be very purpose driven in everything I was about to do so that I could impact as many people as I possibly could.

It was exactly what I needed at that time. I found the answer I was looking for.

I had to start.

Every day we are alive, our time for discovery, implementation of ideas and opportunities for influence, grow smaller. We are chasing our own “sunset,” and if we are in tune with our PURPOSE in our lives, we understand that every moment we waste not executing our ideas, we squander opportunities to influence people for generations to come.

What stops us from starting? What holds us back from taking action and making ideas become realities? Every one of us is different and unique. There isn’t a one-size-fits-all answer that I can give you, but I’m going to walk you down the path and see if you can come up with your own reasons why.

 

Perceptions Aren’t Realities

Some of us are paralyzed by what others think of us. As a society, we tend to conform rather than be unique and genuine. These perceptions can keep us from pressing the “send button.” We say to ourselves, “If I go through with this project, what are people going to think of me? Will I lose my friends because of this? What happens if it doesn’t work?” We come up with way more excuses to NOT put something into play than we do to START making our ideas reality.

So why are we so worried about what others think? Aren’t we in control of our lives? Aren’t we the ones who determine what we want to do and when we want to do them? When push comes to shove, we are the ones responsible for our thoughts and actions. We are the ones who hold ourselves accountable.

 

“So what if it doesn’t work?”

This is one of the most common responses from people I mentor when helping them to “take the leap” or “press send.” Some of us are looking too far ahead and worry about the outcomes before we even start the process. It’s like a hitter worried about if they are going to get a hit or not before they even step in the batters box. If you think about it, it’s ridiculous to worry about an outcome that hasn’t even begun to happen.

And yet, we sometimes put the cart before the horse, thus slamming on the proverbial brake pad because we have already decided it’s not worth the risk.

How is this any way to live? From experience, I can tell you it’s not a great way to live. For me, it brought about a lot of stress and sickness. At the time I didn’t think I had permission to go off and do my own thing. I felt I was second fiddle to some of those around me and the fear of branching off and doing my own thing scared me a little.

OK, a lot.

 

What’s The Worst Thing That Can Happen?

We tell ourselves stories about what we could be one day. How much we can accomplish if we just put our head down and did it. But those stories always have the “worst case scenario” ending attached to it, that is there to delay or derail our actions in making it a reality.

I tell hitters constantly, “What’s the worst thing that could happen?” If you’re looking for a fastball on the first pitch of your at-bat and he throws you a curveball for a strike, what’s the worst thing that’s going to happen? It’s going to be strike one. Who cares what the coach says. Who cares what the well-intoxicated fan behind home plate says, you can’t hit what you aren’t looking for. But you would be surprised how many young hitters are afraid to look to hit one pitch before two strikes.

They are afraid that just because it’s a strike they have to swing at it.

They know they’re wrong, but it’s tough for them to give themselves permission to sit on one pitch. Until they realize that the worst thing that can happen is the pitch is a called strike and they are “down” in the count. That’s it.

Going back to that conference room, one of the executives asked me, “So if you don’t go forward with this expansion, what are the consequences?”

I sat there for a minute and then said, “Nothing.

The worst thing that could happen would to NOT start doing it.” He smiled at me as he strolled down to the end of the conference room table and gave me a high five.

I finally understood it! With that answer, I’ve been able to spread the word of #GoodBatting and impact the lives of thousands across the world. It’s allowed me to take KWB to the next level and position ourselves in different areas of leadership, mentoring and mastermind environments that create more opportunities to live my WHY.

Have you been sitting on a big idea that can help others? Are you working a job just to pay the bills and know there is much more out there for you to accomplish in life? Do you want to be the player you always wanted to be but haven’t pushed yourself hard or far enough to make that jump to the next level?

You know what you need to do. It’s no longer a fantasy or a dream. You have permission to “press send” and change not only your life but the lives of those around you.

Love,

KW


For more than a decade, Kevin Wilson has been one of the most respected hitting coaches in the game. He works behind the scenes as a private hitting consultant to some of the best hitters in Major League Baseball. In 2013, Kevin was the hitting coach for the USA Baseball 18U National Team. Team USA beat Japan for the Gold medal at the IBAF World Cup in Taichung, Taiwan.

He is the author of the Amazon #1 Best Seller The #GoodBatting Book and co-hosts a popular podcast, KWB Radiothat showcases unique conversations with the pros. If you want Kevin to speak at your next event or if you want take advantage of his popular 2-day KWB Experience for players and coaches, contact Kevin today!

Follow Kevin on twitter @KWBaseball and visit his website KWBaseball.com

Maximize Your Influence

 Every morning when my feet touch the ground, I reflect and meditate on two things:

  1. Thank you, Lord, for another day on this Earth.
  2. How can I help someone today?

 This morning ritual started a few years ago after my family and I had experienced something I hope no family has to go through. It was a period in my life where I started to become less selfish and more grateful. During my transformation, I remember reading a quote from Neale Donald Walsch that said, “The struggle ends when the gratitude begins.”

I started to look at my life’s work through an entirely different lens.

As somebody who the pros look to for guidance both on and off the field, I understand that I am in a position of influence. My WHY is to help people and it’s my duty to be ready and willing to help others who are in search of guidance through their latest situation.

 

How Do We Define Success?

 So many coaches today are in it for the wins and losses. They worry more about winning the 9U travel ball trophy than winning the hearts, minds and souls of our young people. Coaching is teaching. It’s lifting people up. It’s providing a path for success, not just base hits, and helping a player find his purpose and his WHY. It’s caring about the person first, and the player second. A true leader pours into others and always eats last.

 So when I took on the job of helping professional hitters with their swings and approaches, I knew I was going to help them with much more than that. 10% of what I do relates to hitting a baseball. The other 90% is where “the magic happens.” At the highest level, if you truly want to succeed, your swing will only get you so far. There are so many other variables in play that need your care and attention. Such as, understanding and mastering your strengths, learning and implementing the mental game – approach, plan, purpose, intent, WHY. Knowing your role on the team and working daily to become the best version of yourself. And learning how to live two separate lives, one at the ballpark and one at home, so as not to intoxicate your family when you’re going through the ups and downs of your season.

 

Helping Others Find Their Success

 When you are in charge of guiding, influencing and inspiring the best athletes in the world, communication is of the utmost importance. It’s not so much what you say, as it’s how you say it and the timing of your communication. I take my job very seriously. The words that come out of my mouth can potentially make an impact on a millionaire. But let’s make one thing clear, the players are millionaires because of their ability to hit. Not because I took any swings for them. They deserve all of the credit. However, they put me in charge of keeping them “in their lane,” being another set of eyes for them. motivating them, calming them and holding them accountable. Therefore, my words carry a tremendous amount of weight and I cannot just carelessly throw out terminology or phrases without any purpose behind them.

Part of being a leader is understanding the opportunities you have to maximize your influence. Pouring into the person first and the player second shows your players you understand the bigger picture. You’re playing the long game. The time you have with your players, is valuable and it requires you to be aware of the “teachable moment.”

 

All It Takes is Five Minutes

 When I give keynote speeches I understand the impacts I can have with the platform that has been given to me. The most important message I try and convey to coaches and leaders is the idea that all it takes is five minutes to change someone’s life.

Think about the all of the “5 minutes” you have in the course of your day. Think about all of the 5-minute windows you have to make a difference in someone’s life. Now think about the times where you had an opportunity to take advantage of those 5 minutes, but you didn’t…

 Life is full of choices. Much of life’s experiences are shaped by the choices that we make. As a leader, our legacy is created over time by the choices we make to influence others around us.

When you see someone who looks to be having a bad day, and you notice that no one else has taken the time to show that person you care about them, take advantage of those 5 minutes to say, “How are you feeling today?” When you watch one of your players make three errors in the game and proceed to have his head down the entire game, take five minutes after the game to pull him away from the team, lift him up and make sure he leaves the ballpark with a more positive outlook on his situation.

 Sometimes we don’t think five minutes is enough time to make an impact on another human being. But the way I look at it is five minutes spent with another person will have lasting effects, just as much as not taking advantage of those 5 minutes.

Your days are filled with choices. What choice are you going to make today to maximize your influence?

Love,

 KW


For more than a decade, Kevin Wilson has been one of the most respected hitting coaches in the game. He works behind the scenes as a private hitting consultant to some of the best hitters in Major League Baseball. In 2013, Kevin was the hitting coach for the USA Baseball 18U National Team. Team USA beat Japan for the Gold medal at the IBAF World Cup in Taichung, Taiwan.

He is the author of the Amazon #1 Best Seller The #GoodBatting Book and co-hosts a popular podcast, KWB Radiothat showcases unique conversations with the pros. If you want Kevin to speak at your next event or if you want take advantage of his popular 2-day KWB Experience for players and coaches, contact Kevin today!

Follow Kevin on twitter @KWBaseball and visit his website KWBaseball.com

More Faith. Less Opinion

Recently, I witnessed a “discussion” on social media. It happened to be on the topic of hitting, so naturally, I was drawn to it. But after seeing the first initial comments along with its content, I knew the comments would be lively and had the potential to turn into one of those nasty, knock-down-drag-out debates – a verbal WWIII if you will.

Hitting a baseball is by far the most debated topic in sports. I don’t know why, but it seems that everyone has an opinion on how a player should swing. It doesn’t matter if you were a hitter or a pitcher when you played, or never even played past little league, everyone seems to have an opinion on what they think is the best way to do it or what the best practices are in order to become the best at hitting a baseball.

As I scrolled down the long list of comments, I started to shake my head. I wasn’t shaking my head so much over the information in those comments (even though some of the information was not good information) but more importantly and more alarming, was the presence of so much hate.

Many people try so hard to be right. They want to push their own philosophy and terminology so they can show they have their foot in the door. It leads to coaches judging one another and throwing their opinions around to prove they are right and the other person is wrong.

Now let’s pause for a moment and remind ourselves that as coaches, it is our responsibility to take care of those around us. That means taking a sincere interest in the person first, before investing in the player second. It means pouring into your coaching staff, empowering them to lead the way, even if they aren’t doing it entirely right the first time through. It’s about serving others, before yourself. In its simplest form, it’s being a servant.

But when my eyes fall back on my iPad, I don’t see any servants. I see judges.  

As I continue to scroll through the comments, I feel the tensions and the raw emotions oozing from the screen. Opinions are being thrown around with reckless abandonment. People are judging others left and right, all because someone else’s opinion doesn’t line up with theirs. It’s not a collaboration. It’s “I’m right. You’re wrong.”

 

Who Are We To Judge?

Opinions are just that – opinions. We are all entitled to our own opinions. If you live in the United States, you are very fortunate to have freedom of speech. But sadly in today’s society, freedom of speech has somehow been stretched to the extremes by people who think they can say whatever they want to, without taking into consideration the harm it can cause the person who absorbs their criticism and proverbial daggers.

Let’s remind ourselves that we are all on this Earth to positively impact the lives of others. We are supposed to be servants. We are here to be of service to others. To provide support, guidance, tough love, etc. to both friends and strangers. We are not built to go through life alone. We are supposed to join others in our journey and lean on the support of those around us.

When we judge others, it speaks volumes about our character. It provides evidence that we are not in sync with our purpose in life. We are telling ourselves that we would rather put down others to benefit our situation, instead of lifting up someone else for their benefit.

Our image trumps our purpose.

So who are we to judge? We are not perfect. None of us are. So why make others feel like they are less than perfect, when in reality, we are cut from the same cloth as everyone else?

 

Your Faith Is Not Perfect

After I had finished reading the comment thread, I tried to process all of the hate and closed-minded opinions I had seen.

My thoughts then traveled to the players – the people who are playing for coaches who are carrying around this hatred and who are not afraid to judge others. I thought about the players who only have one chance at playing the game they love to the best of their ability. One chance at finding out how they like to do it. One chance at finding faith in themselves.

Even well-intentioned coaches have opinions about how a player should swing a bat. But at the end of the day, the player needs to believe in what he is doing. You can listen to someone’s opinion on what they think you need to do, but ultimately it’s up to you to have faith in yourself, faith in your abilities and faith in what got you there in the first place. You were blessed with unique abilities and talents.  Now it’s your job to understand your shape.

Your faith in yourself is not based on the idea that you will be perfect. Rather, it will allow you to do everything within your control to be the best version of yourself.

So the next time you are in a situation where you or someone else wants to be the first to throw a stone, just remember this:

More faith. Less opinion.

Love,

KW


For more than a decade, Kevin Wilson has been one of the most respected hitting coaches in the game. He works behind the scenes as a private hitting consultant to some of the best hitters in Major League Baseball. In 2013, Kevin was the hitting coach for the USA Baseball 18U National Team. Team USA beat Japan for the Gold medal at the IBAF World Cup in Taichung, Taiwan.

He is the author of the Amazon #1 Best Seller The #GoodBatting Book and co-hosts a popular podcast, KWB Radio, that showcases unique conversations with the pros. If you want Kevin to speak at your next event or if you want take advantage of his popular 2-day KWB Experience for players and coaches, contact Kevin today!

Follow Kevin on twitter @KWBaseball and visit his website KWBaseball.com

Understand Your Shape

Only you can be you.

Each of us are uniquely designed. No one has the exact same mix of factors that make you unique. That means no one else on Earth will ever be able to swing the bat or play the role exactly the same way you do.

Your abilities are the natural talents you were born with. Some people have the ability to hit with power. Others have the ability to make consistent contact no matter where the ball is thrown. Few can switch hit. Some will succeed with a no-stride stance. No matter what your natural talents are, they are unique to YOU.

You are the only person on Earth who can use your abilities. Someone can’t walk into a department store and buy a large box of your unique talents, rush out onto the field and expect to perform with them. Many hitters today are swinging someone else’s swing and expecting the same results as the other person. It’s sad to see so many hitters who discount their own unique talents, never reaching their full potential because they are so wrapped up in doing it how someone else likes to do it.

Your abilities were not given to you by God just to make a living. He equipped us with all that we need to live our lives fully. And knowing this, we should seriously examine what we are good at doing. So many spend time focusing on their weaknesses, that they forget or neglect to focus on their strengths. Joe Ferraro and I spoke about this at length on KWB Radio. You can listen to that episode here.

 

Focus On Your Strengths

Time and time again, hitters will readily tell me everything they can’t do, but when asked what they are good at, they have to pause and think about it.

This is the moment when they begin to realize they don’t know what they don’t know.

Because you are unique, there will be times when you feel like you are different, or perhaps an outcast. You will feel like you don’t fit in. These are all natural feelings we experience in our daily lives. So instead of resenting or rejecting who you are and the talents you posses, celebrate how you can uniquely impact your environment with your talents.

Part of accepting your shape is recognizing your limitations.

Nobody is good at everything and no one is called to be everything. We all have defined roles. We need to “stay in our lane” so we can intentionally focus on mastering our strengths. Many of us running through life, will look into the other lane and become envious or distracted. Simply focus on the gifts you possess and try and develop them to best of your abilities.

When we focus on our strengths and being the best version of ourselves, we begin to enjoy the personal satisfaction of having done our jobs well, and we won’t need to compare ourselves to anyone else.

There is a danger in comparing ourselves to others.

One, you will always be able to find someone who can do it better than you. This can easily cause you to be discouraged. Two, you will always find someone who doesn’t do it as well as you do and you can become full of pride. Either attitude will rob you of your joy in living in your shape.

Along your journey, you will inevitably find people who don’t understand your uniqueness or shape. They will criticize you and try and get you to conform to what they think you should be doing. My advice for you is to ignore them. For example, if your hitting coach is forcing you into a swing that you know won’t work for you, you instantly know that coach isn’t in it for you. Stand up for what you know works for you, and continue working towards becoming the best version of yourself.

 

Develop Your Shape

Once you’ve found your unique skills and talents, start developing in knowledge and understanding of your shape. Find out what you’re good at and work to develop your uniqueness. Think about your shape as a muscle. If you don’t exercise, your muscles will weaken. In the same way, if you don’t work on your unique abilities and skills, you will lose them.

Whatever talents you have been given can be enlarged and developed through deliberate practice – practice that promotes purpose and an understanding of WHY you’re doing what you’re doing. It’s also important to point out that studying your craft and being open to constructive feedback, will allow you to become a better version of yourself.

No one is perfect. I see young players coming up in today’s game trying to perfect a swing and they wonder why they aren’t successful. Instead, they should be developing ways that allow them to master their swings and approaches, put themselves in positions to stretch themselves and learn all they can to be the best version of themselves.

Take advantage of every training opportunity to develop your shape and sharpen your talents.

Before you go to bed tonight ask yourself this question: How can I make the best use of the talents that God has given me?

Love,

KW


For more than a decade, Kevin Wilson has been one of the most respected hitting coaches in the game. He works behind the scenes as a private hitting consultant to some of the best hitters in Major League Baseball. In 2013, Kevin was the hitting coach for the USA Baseball 18U National Team. Team USA beat Japan for the Gold medal at the IBAF World Cup in Taichung, Taiwan.

He is the author of the Amazon #1 Best Seller The #GoodBatting Book and co-hosts a popular podcast, KWB Radio, that showcases unique conversations with the pros. If you want Kevin to speak at your next event or if you want take advantage of his popular 2-day KWB Experience for players and coaches, contact Kevin today!

Follow Kevin on twitter @KWBaseball and visit his website KWBaseball.com

I’m Not Your Hitting Coach

A few years ago, there was a player who came to me who was struggling. He was once a top prospect, and he had really started to dig himself a deep hole. He didn’t lose his swing, as much as he was losing his mind. He was in a dark place in his life, and baseball was something he was beginning to HATE.

He picked up the phone and called me.

I was ready to help.

For me, it’s easy to teach someone how to swing a bat. It’s easy to teach them how to HIT. But the hard part is trying to figure out the person – who they are, what strengths they possess, while diving deep into their person to find who they are at the core.

There are so many variables at play when you start to teach the person first.

Back to the player I mentioned earlier. The darkness that hung over him is never a good place for anyone to be, let alone a baseball player trying to make it to the big leagues. The pressure of playing at the highest level brings feelings and experiences that you didn’t even think could happen when you first embarked on your journey. Over the course of time as you rise through the levels in the minor leagues, you become more and more aware of how stressful it is on not only yourself but your family and friends. But nonetheless, we have a lot of work to do.

So I began to dig deep down to find out who the person really is.

I began to take walks with him. I wanted to know his background. Where he grew up. WHY he was playing baseball. What his hobbies were outside of the game. What his relationship was like with his family.

 

Everyone Is An Individual

We all come from different backgrounds, which provides us different experiences. And from those experiences come different feelings, emotions, doubts, fears, strengths, visions, etc. Each experience is unique to the individual, and you can’t change the past. But what we can do is work on influencing the future.

So in order for his swing and approach to play at the highest level, we needed to find out what he was made of. I started firing questions at him, trying to pull the information out of his heart and not just from the automative response his brain thinks I want to hear.  Every question has a purpose because every answer slowly reveals every thread of who he is.  To be someone a player trusts, I have to be a world-class listener, and if I’m going to open my mouth and give him advice on how to swing a bat, or how to HIT, I can’t do so until I know exactly who he is.

In the midst of my usual process of “digging deep” into the player’s past, we uncovered something that he had never taken a closer look at before.

His faith.

He came from a strong Christian background and grew up in the faith. But like most of us who play the game at the professional level, the environment and stresses lead players to either stop practicing their
faith, or push them farther and farther away from what they believe in.

In our conversations, I noticed that in the past when he was doing well, he was a different person – a man who leaned on his faith for his courage, strength, mindset and confidence. It was a subtle, but recurring theme that I was picking up on. I also noticed that he was not giving it much thought as to WHY he did well with it and didn’t do well without it. He was caught so far down in his rabbit hole, that it wasn’t as clear to him, as it was to me.

So instead of going to the cage to fix his swing and approach, we went to the Bible.

Yes, the Bible.

He had become selfish. It was all about him. He began to compare himself to other players. He was so enamored with how others were performing compared to him, that he became jealous instead of grateful. He used to be a good teammate, but now he was burning more bridges than he even realized.

So, we took the focus off him and put it on others. I reminded him that we are all on this Earth to positively impact the lives of others. I told him that if you don’t believe me, take a look in the Bible. He struggled at first, like many of us do when we are deep in uncharted waters. He wanted to believe me. He knew deep down that this was the right move because once upon a time he had been that giving, caring and unselfish person. But as is the case with most things in life, it was easier said than done.

kw-talking-to-jhayBut nonetheless we began to dive into his faith. We started finding verses in the Bible that related to where he was in his life both on and off the field. Slowly but surely, he began to change. I could tell by his demeanor that he wasn’t fighting as much. His tone had become calmer. He was beginning to become more reflective. He made a conscious effort to spend time getting to know his teammates. He was starting to find his PURPOSE and WHY again in life and baseball.

And in the midst of all of this, a pretty cool thing started to happen…he began to hit the ball. He started to crush doubles and homers. His strikeouts fell, and his on-base percentage went up. And all of this happened without showing him a new-age swing, sitting him down in front of slo-motion video or trying to improve his launch angle.

He simply found his way back to his faith.

Whatever your faith is, whatever or whoever you believe in, there is something special about being in sync with WHY you’re on this Earth. When you feel you’re walking alongside someone/something else and you’re not alone, the weight of the world is lifted off your shoulders.

We can’t do it alone. We need someone who we can trust to experience this life together.

Over time, I get to know the player extremely well, and the player gets the opportunity to learn about me and my past. I make sure I share with them my faults and mistakes, not just my success. The role of a mentor and leader is to show times of vulnerability. Times where you allow the person you’re mentoring into your life, so that you can share wisdom, not just knowledge.

Wisdom is an important part of teaching, coaching, mentoring and leading. Wisdom comes from experience. Knowledge only comes from textbooks.

When sharing wisdom and life lessons with players, I give them an opportunity to see that they are not alone. When I do this, they begin to trust me because now they understand that I’m helping them from experience, not because the diploma on my wall says “you’re now an ‘expert.’”

During the process of sharing experiences with each other, a beautiful thing begins to happen. I am no longer their “hitting coach.” I become their mentor. Their friend. Their confidant. Someone who they can come to with thoughts and feelings on things outside of hitting a baseball.

Initially, you may call me to work with your swing and approach, but you end up realizing you’re looking for someone to walk alongside you during some of the most difficult times in your life.

And when that moment comes, I’m grateful for the opportunity to be that person you choose to be by your side.

Love,

KW


For more than a decade, Kevin Wilson has been one of the most respected hitting coaches in the game. He works behind the scenes as a private hitting consultant to some of the best hitters in Major League Baseball. In 2013, Kevin was the hitting coach for the USA Baseball 18U National Team. Team USA beat Japan for the Gold medal at the IBAF World Cup in Taichung, Taiwan.

He is the author of the Amazon #1 Best Seller The #GoodBatting Book and co-hosts a popular podcast, KWB Radio, that showcases unique conversations with the pros. If you want Kevin to speak at your next event or if you want take advantage of his popular 2-day KWB Experience for players and coaches, contact Kevin today!

Follow Kevin on twitter @KWBaseball and visit his website KWBaseball.com